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In the face of our global economy’s seemingly never-ending nosedive, Japan has come up with a hip, new way to stimulate growth in its local communities: by starting up a band!

Machikado Keiki☆JAPAN, a group name that roughly translates to “Street Corner Conditions JAPAN,” is the latest and greatest four-girl idol group to hit the media. I know it sounds a bit like a band full of hookers, but just wait until you hear their pitch! Basically, the better the nation’s stocks are doing, the shorter their skirts get! Clearly, the idea of having enough money for food and rent is not enough of an incentive to get some economic stimulus going; what the country really needs is more half-naked women!

Now, some people might be wondering what on earth donning a miniskirt has to do with the fiscal state, but Japan has seen some honest trends in that regard. Back in the 1960s during the Izanagi economic boom, the popularity of miniskirts was exploding thanks, in part, to the popularity of British supermodel Twiggy. But then, with the oil crisis of 1973, miniskirts saw a definite decline from fashion trends, only to surge back into the mainstream in the 1980s, with the disco boom and an unprecedented economic bubble. We’re not saying that correlation necessarily equals causation, but what’s wrong with a little experiment, encouraging our pop stars to show some extra skin for a noble cause?

The way it works is that the length of the skirts worn at Machikado Keiki☆JAPAN’s concerts is determined by the current stock price average. For every 1,000 yen (US$10) increase, starting at 10,000 yen the skirts get a good deal shorter. But get this, since the recent creation of this idol group, stock prices have skyrocketed so much so quickly that the pop singers will be performing their first show completely skirtless! Did we mention that two of these girls are under the age of 18? …Only in Japan.

At least the group has a good attitude about this serious panty-shot in the works. According to recent interviews, if having to sing and dance around in their underwear means that the economy is in a better place and that regular people are able to go about their lives with smiles on their faces, then that’s enough to bring these girls satisfaction. I’m betting that all of the 40-year-old fanboys who go to see the show in Akihabara will be smiling and satisfied as well!

There may be one cause for concern, however. If all of this economic success really is the result of girls in tiny skirts, then won’t things stagnate now that these idols have nothing left to lose (not without a change in profession)?! Luckily, someone in management was thinking ahead. If stock prices continue to rise and hit the 15,000 yen (US$150) mark, then the girls will take all of their good intentions to the streets of Tokyo and deliver cakes to the public. Skirtless.

Machikado Keiki☆JAPAN‘s first CD, Abeno☆MIX (reference to “Abenomics,” the name given to current Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s new economic plan) will go on sale April 17.

Source: Zakzak
Images: Alice Project

Let’s meet the members! This is Sakura Yuki, age 20.
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Next up, Kanon Mori, age 23.
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Jun Akami, age 17.
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And finally, the youngest member of the group, Hinako Kuroki, age 16.
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Until breaching the 10,000 yen (US$100) mark, Machikado Keiki☆JAPAN was fated to wear depressingly long skirts. They hated it:
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At 11,000 yen (US$110) they promised to upgrade to ugly knee-length skirts.
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The next phase was the miniskirts!
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Having reached the 13,000 yen (US$130) mark, the group has committed to no skirts at their first concert!
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Next comes the “Ultimate Version,” though we’re not quite sure how this is an improvement…
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